It’s been a long time since I read a book the way I did when I was a kid. You know, when you found a book that really grabbed you and you couldn’t stop reading, and that’s all you wanted to do… That’s what happened to me with The Book of Lost Things, by John Connolly. I love that feeling, and I really liked this book. It was powerful and dark, definitely not a children’s book…full of fairy tales retold with a twist…and with a story about grief and loss, courage, and growing up.
Twelve-year-old David loses his beloved mother to cancer, and then his father remarries and has another son. It’s too much for the still grieving David, and he is filled with anger and jealously. Strange things start to happen to him when they move into the very old home of his new stepmother. He can hear the books in his bedroom talking, for one thing…and there’s a strange, crooked man that watches him. And then one day, while walking near the sunken garden behind the house, he hears his dead mother calling him, and he enters a dark and violent world under the garden, and it is the beginning of a journey of self-discovery, of growth, and of coming to terms with loss.
“Instead, while others aided you along the way, it was your own strength and courage that brought you at last to an understanding of your place in this world and your own. You were a child when first I found you, but now you are becoming a man.”
This is a remarkable and powerful book. The last few pages were so beautifully written they took my breath away. The story lingers and haunts you for awhile.
Many people have read and reviewed this book. After reading Chris’s (Stuff As Dreams Are Made On), Nymeth’s (things mean a lot), and Dewey’s (The Hidden Side of a Leaf) reviews of this book, I knew I had to read it. It was a perfect beginning for the Once Upon a Time Challenge III.